Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Salena Zito: Now, More Than Ever, Twitter Isn't Real Life

 What matters on Twitter ... often just stays on Twitter. 

    Those who use the platform to voice opinions on faith, politics, guns, culture, the military, the police and a whole host of other issues just aren't representative of popular opinion. They tend to hold positions not just to the left but to the far, far left. 

    Journalists, who are among the worst Twitter addicts, seize on those positions as if in church. They craft ideas from them; they turn out stories based on the thinking that goes on within that bubble. What they produce rarely comes from anything that resembles a reasonable set of views. 

    Jump on Twitter to check on culture any hour of the day, and you'd be inclined to believe everyone wants to defund the police; that only racists believe critical race theory should be scrutinized; that all white people are bigots because of history; that no one wants voter ID; that there is no crisis at the border.

    If you jumped on Twitter on Sunday after grilling out for Father's Day, you might have been inclined to believe that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis had somehow orchestrated an assassination attempt against Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz during a Pride parade in the Sunshine State. That is because, within moments of a car crashing into the parade, news reports led with stories about a white man in a pickup truck causing a "tragic accident" in scare quotes. 

    Within moments, the mayor of Fort Lauderdale, Dean Trantalis, said it was a "terrorist attack against the LGBT community" and "intentional," and soon, "#DeathSantis" was trending on Twitter, linking the tragedy to the Florida governor. Chris Hahn, who has a blue-checked verified account and is a Democratic strategist, tweeted, "Ron DeSantis and the rest of the Florida GOP have blood on their hands."

    There were plenty of verified blue-checked Twitter accounts to jump on that bandwagon; it took hours, as stories often do, for the police to make the truth known: The tragic event was indeed just a tragic accident. In fact, the lethally errant driver had been a member of the Fort Lauderdale Gay Men's Chorus.

    Jump on Twitter ahead of a big political race like the New York mayoral primary on Tuesday, and you'd be inclined to believe that one of the two liberal darlings in the race -- either Maya Wiley, a former counsel to Mayor Bill de Blasio, or former Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia -- would walk away with the Democratic Party's nomination. Instead, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, the former cop who ran on a message focused on public safety, emerged with a substantial lead in the first preference tally. The count could take weeks, and there is still a long-shot chance that Adams will not win, but his candidacy has already shown that one's status as a Twitter darling does not mean one is connecting with voters on issues that matter to them. 

    In a story I did for the New York Post six months ago on the primary race, voter sentiments and polling showed Adams and Andrew Yang were leading the pack and that reducing crime and creating more jobs, not wokeness, were at the top of the list for New York City voters. 

    A tweet CNN wrote Saturday rightly drew scrutiny from Dave Wasserman of the Cook Political Report that read: "Georgia removes 100,000 names from voter registration rolls." 

    Wasserman noted in a tweet that "once again, a major news outlet's headline omits the rather important detail that every state routinely removes moved/inactive voters from their rolls as a best practice of election administration."
    Wasserman added that in a click-driven age, and given the stakes, it is imperative for news organizations to be careful and clear. 

    Because of its lack of context, the tweet stoked division because Georgia has a Republican governor who recently signed a voting law that gave executives at corporations such as Delta, Coca-Cola and Major League Baseball an attack of the vapors. 

    Accurate, relevant information rarely appears in tweets because news organizations know they are catering to a lefty audience, serving up exactly what that audience wants to consume and discuss. Make it crazy enough, and maybe their story will even trend on Twitter! 

    Then again, Twitter is not very representative of America. Heck, it isn't even representative of Democrats. A recent Pew Research Survey on Twitter use concluded just 10% of users produced an astonishing 92% of all tweets, and nearly 69% of those highly prolific users are Democrats. That alone should put to rest the idea that anything that happens on Twitter represents the real world. 

    But a closer look also reveals that the Democrats using Twitter are far more liberal than the Democrats who are not on Twitter. 

    In short, if you are on Twitter to get a sense of what an average Democrat thinks about an issue -- the way too many journalists, strategists and candidates seem to do -- your sense is going to be skewed. You are not reading average Democratic viewpoints.

    Nor are you getting a good sense of reality. For example, if there were indeed no crisis on the border, why would Vice President Kamala Harris finally be going there? If people in New York City really did believe that the police should be defunded, why did Adams finish first among the mayoral candidates, and why would President Joe Biden now be calling to re-fund the police, doubling federal funding that pays state and local governments to hire more police officers?

    Salena Zito is a national political reporter and columnist for the Washington Examiner as well as a weekly columnist for the New York Post. She reaches the Everyman and Everywoman through shoe-leather journalism, traveling from Main Street to the beltway and all places in between. To find out more about Salena and read her past columns, please visit the Creators Syndicate webpage at www.creators.com.



Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Shocking that an extremely politically biased writer doesn’t like people on the other side of the political isle. What an amazingly generic column. Does the right have anyone who can write a thought provoking article?

Krusatyr said...

I'd appreciate a Trump driven new messaging platform as a conservative substitute for leftist Twitter. He could call it "Trumpet" and each message a "Blast", a more assertive and less limp wristed branding than "Twitter" and "Tweet".

Anonymous said...

Nothing matters on Twitter.....

Anonymous said...

Yet another political propaganda machine paid for and ran by Marxist democrats. And anyone who thinks that’s not the case have clearly ingested a sizable amount of lead paint chips as a child.

Anonymous said...

Debbie Wasserman Schultz is even still around ?

(Has she combed her hair yet) ??

Anonymous said...

I don't know if the lede is the Kingfish's or hers, but either way, when was Twatter ever "real life?" That there is even the possibility of confusion speaks volumes. And is both scary and telling.

Anonymous said...

Please don't say 'ran by'. It's worse than 'I seen'.

Anonymous said...

The way I see it: The majority of people on Twitter are unimportant people jocking somewhat important people jocking important people.

Anonymous said...

13 to 2.

Focus on what is important, KF.

Anonymous said...

Ask Trump if Twitter is real life, oh that’s right...

Anonymous said...

Would you please show us on the doll where Trump touched you?

Anonymous said...

10:48 = 100%

I feel that we many have rewritten the definition of "brave and outspoken" with what we formerly all recognized as mental illness.

Krusatyr said...

11:21 pm:

Agree, verbs that are raped instead of conjugationally caressed are off-putting, like hitting a pothole (as a locally jarring metaphor).

Anonymous said...

TWITTER IS REAL LIFE !! It has controlled policies and narratives in this country since the very day it was unleashed on the world !! TWITTER is the friggin devil and it's minions.......FB ...TIK TOK...EYE SPY AND WHATEVER these things are called. Our country is literally being run by BOTS......blue haired porkies and a couple azzhats in silicone valley !

Anonymous said...

So Zita has failed to find any "right leaning" people on Twitter or just not the Q's and liars?

Anonymous said...

If I may suggest, why not call it "Fukkit" and each posting a "Crock" (as in, well, you know...) and that way, anyone and everyone can post regardless of race, sexual orientation, intelligence level, lack of understanding or empathy, education, income (earned or not), religion, gender identification (real, feigned, or just made-the-hell-up). Posters could say...yep, keep reading...anything, no matter how offensive or demeaning or even completely false, about anyone, at any time. BUT -

Here's the twist. Posts would be videos with the poster speaking directly into a camera. And if the poster wanted to verbally attack someone or make accusations against them, he or she had to do it to the intended target's face. No, it wouldn't last a week but it would damned sure be "real life" while it lasted.

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Trollfest '09

Trollfest '07 was such a success that Jackson Jambalaya will once again host Trollfest '09. Catch this great event which will leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Othor Cain and his band, The Black Power Structure headline the night while Sonjay Poontang returns for an encore performance. Former Frank Melton bodyguard Marcus Wright makes his premier appearance at Trollfest singing "I'm a Sweet Transvestite" from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." Kamikaze will sing his new hit, “How I sold out to da Man.” Robbie Bell again performs: “Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be Bells” and “Any friend of Ed Peters is a friend of mine”. After the show, Ms. Bell will autograph copies of her mug shot photos. In a salute to “Dancing with the Stars”, Ms. Bell and Hinds County District Attorney Robert Smith will dance the Wango Tango.

Wrestling returns, except this time it will be a Battle Royal with Othor Cain, Ben Allen, Kim Wade, Haley Fisackerly, Alan Lange, and “Big Cat” Donna Ladd all in the ring at the same time. The Battle Royal will be in a steel cage, no time limit, no referee, and the losers must leave town. Marshand Crisler will be the honorary referee (as it gives him a title without actually having to do anything).

Meet KIM Waaaaaade at the Entergy Tent. For five pesos, Kim will sell you a chance to win a deed to a crack house on Ridgeway Street stuffed in the Howard Industries pinata. Don't worry if the pinata is beaten to shreds, as Mr. Wade has Jose, Emmanuel, and Carlos, all illegal immigrants, available as replacements for the it. Upon leaving the Entergy tent, fig leaves will be available in case Entergy literally takes everything you have as part of its Trollfest ticket price adjustment charge.

Donna Ladd of The Jackson Free Press will give several classes on learning how to write. Smearing, writing without factchecking, and reporting only one side of a story will be covered. A donation to pay their taxes will be accepted and she will be signing copies of their former federal tax liens. Ms. Ladd will give a dramatic reading of her two award-winning essays (They received The Jackson Free Press "Best Of" awards.) "Why everything is always about me" and "Why I cover murders better than anyone else in Jackson".

In the spirit of helping those who are less fortunate, Trollfest '09 adopts a cause for which a portion of the proceeds and donations will be donated: Keeping Frank Melton in his home. The “Keep Frank Melton From Being Homeless” booth will sell chances for five dollars to pin the tail on the jackass. John Reeves has graciously volunteered to be the jackass for this honorable excursion into saving Frank's ass. What's an ass between two friends after all? If Mr. Reeves is unable to um, perform, Speaker Billy McCoy has also volunteered as when the word “jackass” was mentioned he immediately ran as fast as he could to sign up.

In order to help clean up the legal profession, Adam Kilgore of the Mississippi Bar will be giving away free, round-trip plane tickets to the North Pole where they keep their bar complaint forms (which are NOT available online). If you don't want to go to the North Pole, you can enjoy Brant Brantley's (of the Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance) free guided tours of the quicksand field over by High Street where all complaints against judges disappear. If for some reason you are unable to control yourself, never fear; Judge Houston Patton will operate his jail where no lawyers are needed or allowed as you just sit there for minutes... hours.... months...years until he decides he is tired of you sitting in his jail. Do not think Judge Patton is a bad judge however as he plans to serve free Mad Dog 20/20 to all inmates.

Trollfest '09 is a pet-friendly event as well. Feel free to bring your dog with you and do not worry if your pet gets hungry, as employees of the Jackson Zoo will be on hand to provide some of their animals as food when it gets to be feeding time for your little loved one.

Relax at the Fox News Tent. Since there are only three blonde reporters in Jackson (being blonde is a requirement for working at Fox News), Megan and Kathryn from WAPT and Wendy from WLBT will be on loan to Fox. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both and a torn-up Obama yard sign will entitle you to free drinks served by Megan, Wendy, and Kathryn. Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required. Just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '09 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

Note: Security provided by INS.

Trollfest '07

Jackson Jambalaya is the home of Trollfest '07. Catch this great event which promises to leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Sonjay Poontang and his band headline the night with a special steel cage, no time limit "loser must leave town" bout between Alan Lange and "Big Cat"Donna Ladd following afterwards. Kamikaze will perform his new song F*** Bush, he's still a _____. Did I mention there was no referee? Dr. Heddy Matthias and Lori Gregory will face off in the undercard dueling with dangling participles and other um, devices. Robbie Bell will perform Her two latest songs: My Best Friends are in the Media and Mama's, Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to be George Bell. Sid Salter of The Clarion-Ledger will host "Pin the Tail on the Trial Lawyer", sponsored by State Farm.

There will be a hugging booth where in exchange for your young son, Frank Melton will give you a loooong hug. Trollfest will have a dunking booth where Muhammed the terrorist will curse you to Allah as you try to hit a target that will drop him into a vat of pig grease. However, in the true spirit of Separate But Equal, Don Imus and someone from NE Jackson will also sit in the dunking booth for an equal amount of time. Tom Head will give a reading for two hours on why he can't figure out who the hell he is. Cliff Cargill will give lessons with his .80 caliber desert eagle, using Frank Melton photos as targets. Tackleberry will be on hand for an autograph session. KIM Waaaaaade will be passing out free titles and deeds to crackhouses formerly owned by The Wood Street Players.

If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

Note: Security provided by INS